Because they operate in a competitive industry, hotels must continually look for ways to augment their products and services to remain financially viable. In addition to providing superior levels of service and top-notch accommodations, savvy hotel managers also look for ways to increase revenue by offering ancillary products and services that add value to the customer experience.
Target niche markets that make sense for your particular location. For example, a hotel located near the airport might increase revenue by marketing to business travelers, while hotels close to family destination locations, like theme parks, could target young families and children. Marketing to select demographics can bring in more customers and increase revenue.
Survey guests to learn more about products and services they find attractive and would be willing to pay for. For example, if hotel guests regularly ask about dining options, and you have no in-hotel restaurant or room service options, consider investing in these upgrades as a way to generate future revenue. If business travelers request services such as laptop rentals or a business service center, consider adding these amenities as a way to increase revenue through usage surcharges.
Add entertainment options and charge a fee. For example, you might add an open-mic or band night in the bar or a movie screening in a conference center.
Expand gift shop offering to include locally-made items, souvenirs, clothing items and food and drinks.
Up-sell amenities. If you have a wide range of services available in your hotel, offer package deals that allow you to up-sell or upgrade your customers as a way of increasing revenue. For example, sell a pass for your fitness center, swimming pool or business services center as an extra upgrade, or provide flexible check-in and check-out times for an additional surcharge. Consider other upgraded options like preferred parking or daily laundry service.
Partner with other companies. For example, you might contract with a car service or limousine company that can provide guests with private transportation while giving you a referral payment.
Promote specials online and through email and social media marketing. Offer hotel guests free Internet access and encourage them to blog or post status updates and photos related to their stay at your property.
Keep track of what your competition is doing and adjust your costs and services accordingly. For example, offer to match the competition's prices, or offer specials or upgrades to repeat customers.
Lisa McQuerrey has been a business writer since 1987. In 1994, she launched a full-service marketing and communications firm. McQuerrey's work has garnered awards from the U.S. Small Business Administration, the International Association of Business Communicators and the Associated Press. She is also the author of several nonfiction trade publications, and, in 2012, had her first young-adult novel published by Glass Page Books.